(Towson, MD—March 10, 2014) On Friday, February 28, J.T. Noone and Pat Healy of the Baltimore Blast soccer team paid a visit to Martin Boulevard Elementary School. During a school-wide assembly, the team members provided words of encouragement building on the topic of “Believing in Yourself and Doing Your Best,” which was the school’s theme for the third through fifth graders taking the Maryland School Assessments.
After the assembly, Noone read Green Eggs and Ham to kindergarten students, and Healy helped fifth grade classes review math problems for the MSAs. The players also danced in the hallway with second and third grade students to the tune of “Celebration,” which is the team’s theme song.
“Dancing in hallways on Friday right before dismissal is an opportunity for all students who have been in attendance and on time all week long. It was a special treat for the kids to meet and interact with Blast players,” said Janet Mahoney, principal of Martin Boulevard E.S.
The school was selected after receiving information from the Education Foundation regarding Student Achiever nights and the Baltimore Blast speaker series. During this school year, the partnership has expanded to include two “Student Achievement Nights,” where students are acknowledged for academics, attendance and character, receiving the opportunity to receive a free ticket for the designated game. Students who earned this opportunity were honored on the field during opening ceremonies. Also hosted this year was “Education is a Blast Night,” where a portion of every ticket purchased was donated to the Foundation in support of districtwide initiatives, scholarships and school-based projects/instructional initiative grants. All Baltimore County Public Schools staff and students in attendance were invited onto the field for opening ceremonies. School visitations by the Blast players are another new addition to this partnership.
“The Education Foundation is extremely grateful to have had a partnership with the Baltimore Blast over the past several years. Having the young, professional soccer players visit our schools provided positive messages about character education, anti-bullying, global competition and college awareness. The players interact well with the students and the Blast organization has participated in multiple events throughout the year to help support our mission,” said Deborah Phelps, director of the Education Foundation.
The Education Foundation is a private, non-profit charitable organization under IRS section 501(c)(3). We accept contributions that are designated by donors for specific purposes, such as scholarships and school-based projects, as well as unrestricted funds that are granted by the Education Foundation in response to fulfill school system goals.